hello and welcome back to "newsline," i'm shery ahn. let's get started with the head lines. pro-russian separatists who organized a referendum in eastern ukraine say an overwhelming majority of the voters want self-rule. japan's national soccer coach has announced his squad for next month's world cup. the team includes a record number of players based overseas. and businesses and advertisers are catching on to
something made popular by social media users, viral content websites. the organizers of a referendum in ukraine's eastern region of donetsk say residents have voted overwhelmingly in favor of greater autonomy. but the credibility of the polls is coming into question. people voted in the regions of donetsk and luhansk. they were asked if they support self-rule for the region. it's not clear if people were voting for independence or for a system allowing greater autonomy within ukraine. the pro-russian organizers say the turnout was about 75% in donetsk, and over 80% in luhansk. >> translator: 89.07% voted in favor. >> the organizer says the voting was fair, but did not disclose how the results and turnout rate were finalized so quickly. many observers are pointing to
possible ballot rigging. this video supposedly shot at a polling station shows a man writing names on multiple voting slips. he's also showing several passports as voter identification. this woman has two voting slips. and she casts both of them in the same ballot box. confusion has been reported over the referendum. at another polling station in western dancesque gunshots were heard amid clashes between residents and authorities trying to stop the voting. one person has been reported killed. the country's interim government maintains it does not approve of the outcome of the referendum. >> this is not a referendum. it's an illegal activity by terrorists. >> meanwhile, the u.s. and european nations maintained the referendums have no legal basis, and are not valid.
a specialist in russian affairs with the tokyo foundation gives us his take on the referendum. >> one main objective is for this refinement is to show the concern about the -- this current government -- this most be conceivable scenario from the point of view of president putin because, you know, president putin really understand that the direction of the eastern government in ukraine. the only option is to make the situation in eastern part of ukraine managebly -- by doing this russian government also use the situation to try to
deal with the government of ukraine. if ukraine continue to be unstable managebly unstable then russia also could influence the interim government possible direction to supporting the separatists of the eastern part of ukraine. so i believe this potential action will be hard anyway the situation and the crime will continue. >> soccer fans in japan finally know who is on the country's squad for next month's world cup. the japanese football association will be sending a 23-man roster to brazil. coach alberto zaccheroni has gone for a record 12 overseas based players.
honda of ac milan is one of eight strikers. kagawaa of manchester united also makes the squad along with okazaki. and okako of munich 1860 is also on the list. in the midfield, hasebe is included as captain. at the back, defender nagatomo's inter milan is on a plane to brazil along with uchida. and yoshida of southampton is expected to recover from a knee injury. hanover and stuttgart will also make the trip. kawashima is one of three goalkeepers. japan's italian coach has set his sights on the quarterfinals with a squad packed with experience. >> translator: most of those
selected have played in the asian cup. the others are players who have shown real improvement since that tournament. >> japan-based forward okubo of kawasaki was a top four in j-league one last season. >> translator: i want to give an exciting performance at the world cup. >> many fans in tokyo are excited after the announcement was made. >> translator: i hope they win it all. i'm sure they will. >> translator: japan has made it to the finals six teams before. i hope they get to the quarterfinals. japan's in group "c" where it will face cote d'ivoire in the opening match on june 14th.
now let's get the latest business stories from ron madison. all right. many japanese companies are releasing earnings reports this week. nissan motors among those reporting good news. double digit growth, in fact, in its profit, and company executives forecast the global sales will reach a record high this fiscal year. >> this is a satisfactory outcome reflecting solid growth in several key markets. >> the automaker posted an operating profit of $4.9 billion in the fiscal year that ended in march. that's up 13.6% in yen terms compared to the year before. sales rose 20%. like many companies nissan got a boost ahead of japan's consumption tax hike in april and new models proved popular in the u.s. market. for the current fiscal year, nissan expects global is sales to raise nearly 9% to a record 5.6 million units. executives say new plant capacity in mexico and brazil may boost sales in latin america.
well, business sentiment among japanese workers fell in april for the first time in two months. amid the fallout from the consumption tax hike, the fall is the second largest on record following march 2011 and that's when that massive earthquake and tsunami struck japan's northeast. officials at the cabinet office asked more than 2,000 people nationwide, mainly in the service sector, how they felt about the economy. the april index plunged more than 16 points from the previous month. many respondents said sales dropped at department stores, supermarkets, electronics retailers, and car dealers after the tax hike on april 1st. but the outlook, a few months ahead, does look a bit brighter. the index there jumped 15.6 points to 50.3. that's the first rise in five months. now officials said many respondents hoped the impact of the tax hike will wane in two to three months. as many companies move to raise wages. well, business people are getting a look at the broadest gauge of japan's trade with investment in the rest of the
world. the current account does show spending on imports exceeded exports. but returns on foreign investment kept it in positive territory. surplus was the smallest since finance ministry officials started adding up compareal data back in 1985. prelimner figures put it at more than $7.7 billion. that's down more than 81% in yen terms from 2012. now the trade balance is a smaller measure of the difference between imports and exports. ministry officials say the deficit is more than twice what it was last year. more than $106 billion. japan has relied more on fossil fuels since the nuclear disaster at the fukushima daiichi. and the weaker yen has made it more expensive to import what's needed to power homes and businesses. japanese business people sought better returns on their investments abroad. that led to a surplus in interest and dividends of about $164 billion. and that was a gain of 14%. now that surplus offset the
trade shortfall. for march the current account hit a surplus for the second straight month of about $1.1 billion. all right on to the markets now. chinese equity showing a strong performance today. investors welcomed a new policy announcement from beijing. china's state council has outlined its blueprint for capital market reforms in the country. and that did seem to give a boost to investor sentiment today. the shanghai composite up more than 2%. 2,052. that's a level that we haven't seen since late april. the positive sentiment also felt in hong kong with the hang sang index claiming 1.8%, 22,261. pretty wide range of shares were bought today. tech shares led the advance. now, the strength in the chinese market really didn't ripple through, though, to many bourses in the region. investors not all that eager to bid up shares ahead of the release of china's key economic data later on in the week. they include retail sales and
industrial output. tokyo's nikkei average was one of the markets that declined down more than 0.3%. finished at 14,149. trading was pretty lackluster. investors failed to find buying cues as the yen's slide has paused. now they were also a bit disappointed about the profit outlooks of japanese companies for this fiscal year. the chief negotiators in the trans-pacific partnership have sat down together again. they do have some pretty big gaps between them still, though. they're trying to resolve differences over tariffs and other sticking points in the free trade deal. koji tsuruoka from japan and negotiators from 11 other countries participating in the talks are meeting in ho chi minh city, vietnam. >> translator: japan and the united states have made considerable progress on the tpp in recent bilateral negotiations. i hope this will be a major driving force to accelerate
negotiations in ho chi minh city. >> tsuruoka admitted the negotiators have a lot of work to do. they're discussing how to protect patents and copyrights. and they want to set conditions for competition between state-run companies and private firms. they also have to discuss tariffs. they're hoping to put some of their differences behind them before ministers responsible for trade meet next week in singapore. china is further boosting its economic presence in africa. the country has agreed to invest in a railroad construction project in kenya. chinese premier li keqiang met the top leaders of four east african countries in nairobi. officials at kenya's presidential office say china signed an agreement to spend $3.6 billion on the project. the amount represents 90% of the costs required to build the 600 kilometer railway that will link nairobi and mombasa, kenya's second largest city. li said the deal is only the beginning. he noted that the railroad will eventually connect seven east african countries but criticism
about chinese investment is mounting in africa. some experts say china sends its own workers to africa for these kind of projects and that doesn't help to raise local employment. the latest deal also went to a chinese company without any bidding for the contract. users share a wealth of content online. everything from self-help tips to scandalous pictures and music videos. developers at websites promoting viral media collect some of that and encourage viewers to share it. and more and more businesses are trying to cash in now. nhk world's rosa fabrino reports. >> reporter: at this technology and media conference in texas, budding viral media company upwardly has everyone's attention. >> the three things that we talk about when we look for shareable content is it substantive, is it engaging, is it entertaining. >> reporter: upworthy's site is simple, compelling pictures and
videos are posted with short introductions. big eye catching share buttons on the top and the bottom of the page invite users to click on them. upworthy is an aggregator. it doesn't create its own content but it collects it from other websites. the company's editors work hard to pick the catchiest and most relevant head lines. >> you get dons of shares and tons of clicks that's when you get viral and that's what we try to do all the time. so you're going to have to get clicks you have to focus on framing things and to get shares your content must live up to its framing. you cannot overpromise. >> reporter: new york based buzzfeed is one of the largest viral media businesses. remarkably its viewing 23ig yours are higher than "the new york times" or "the washington post." the firm has been expanding its video content with its west
coast operation. this is buzzfeed's los angeles office where over 100 people are working to create original video content. they have completed over 15 original videos, hoping to add to their over 130 million unique monthly visitors. they create each video from shooting to editing. even filming in their own office. buzzfeed also works with brands and advertisers to create customized content. this travel piece introduces gourmet food and seasonal tourist spots. buzzfeed produces with the railway company. follow the story until the end and you're led to the sponsor's website. this social advertising strategy generates the main revenue for the company. >> i think the experience for their users really high quality.
the performance of the ads, they click many times better than traditional banner ads. they always perform better. >> reporter: big media is starting to notice the power of viral media. since last year, buzzfeed has been creating video content with broadcasting giant cnn. buzzfeed's management says they want to put more emphasis on news reporting. with the help of the cnn brand, and production strengths. >> we absolutely do journalism. we employ a very large number of journalists, and exciting -- i think it's very exciting that we're expanding. we've been hiring a lot of people in the last year. >> reporter: viral media websites have shown they can attract millions of users. but can they be a credible, sustainable alternative to traditional media? that's the challenge they're facing now. rosa sobrino, nhk world, los angeles. >> all right. that is going to wrap it up for
biz this hour. let's get a check of the markets. japan's top government spokesperson has expressed support for a call for peaceful resolutions to territorial disputes in the south china sea. chief cabinet secretary yoshihide suga's comment came in response to a statement released by the leaders of southeast asian countries. the leaders of the association
of southeast asian nations called for a halt to actions that might escalate tensions. this is apparently a reference to a standoff between china and vietnam over chinese oil drilling rig set up in waters claimed by both nations. vessels from the two sides have clashed in the area near the paracel islands. suga says the japanese government highly praises the united front put forward by asean members. >> translator: japan is deeply concerned about rising tension caused by china's unilateral attempt to drill for oil in waters where boundaries have yet to be agreed upon. >> suga said japan's government hopes that the countries concerned will abide by international law and act calmly. iranian president hassan rouhani says his country is not seeking nuclear weapons, and he urged leaders of foreign nations to assess that its nuclear
program is for peaceful purposes. rouhani made the comment in a speech to iranian scientists and nuclear experts. he said negotiators will be transparent in their talks with representatives from the world powers. he said iran would never accept what he called nuclear apartheid by giving up its program. analysts say rouhani is looking to counter iranian hard-liners that have been critical of the way his administration has handled the talks. rouhani's comments come ahead of the start of a fresh round of meetings in vienna on tuesday. negotiators are scheduled to draft a final agreement on iran's nuclear program. they hope to reach a final deal by july 20th. monday marks the final day of voting in india's general election. the poll has been going on for more than a month, and it's said to be the world's largest democratic vote. more than 800 million people are eligible to cast ballots. analysts say the country could have a change of power for the first time in a decade.
voting across 543 constituencies is taking place in phases. monday's polling covers 41 electoral districts in three states. opinion polls show the ruling congress party's facing an uphill battle. opponents cite india's economic decline, rising prices, and political corruption. the largest opposition bharatiya janata party is gaining momentum. it has a trump card in its prime ministerial candidate narendra modi. a chief minister, he is widely credit for india's economic growth. but the congress party has said that if modi takes office religious confrontation will only worsen. vote counting begins across the country on friday. india's 800 million voters are deciding who should guide their country into the future. the ruling party is trying to combat sinking support by handing the reins to rahul
gandhi the heir to a political dynasty, leading the charge for the largest opposition party is narendra modi who is running on his economic record. "newsline" focus will show you what's at stake and how the outcome could affect asia, and the world. don't miss india: the next step. kei nishikori has become the first japanese tennis player to join the top ten of the men's world rankings. nishikori climbed from 12th to 9th place on monday. an earlier back injury forced him to withdraw during the final of the madrid open in spain against top ranked rafael nadal. nishikori took the first set but retired in the third. people in the u.s. central plains bracing for another day of severe thunderstorms and possible tornadoes. our meteorologist jonathan oh joins me now. jonathan, how much longer will the severe weather last? >> well, shery, it looks like that we're going to have to monitor this throughout the day
today. and also, as we go in to tuesday, because the system is still pretty vigorous. you can see here the clouds really billowing up toward the central portion of the united states. and we have some video to show you coming out of missouri, where a tornado plowed through a town there saturday causing widespread damage to homes and buildings and severe thunderstorm warnings were in effect for missouri and kansas. it toppled many trees and power lines and debris was scattered throughout the town. thankfully no injuries have been reported. the same storm system will affect other parts of the u.s., as we go throughout monday and into tuesday. let me show you the reason why. we have a very powerful dip in the jet stream or trough that is serving as a pushing mechanism for the cold air, and warm airs ahead of that. that clash is creating this front and it's also creating the severe weather as we go through monday and tuesday. so, look out for severe thunderstorms anywhere from the great lakes all the way down into texas, with portions eastward seeing some rain. now, on the flip side of the
front, along with a trough dipping far down into the south, it's dragging cold air. so on sunday, the rockies saw some snow and that's going to repeat itself coming up on monday. snowfall and cold temperatures. denver you're going to see a high of 3, that's it, with a chance for some snow. and then ahead of the front, rain, thunderstorms, and warm temperatures up to 31 degrees in chicago and we're looking out for some busy weather there. now, down toward los angeles, santa ana winds are going to pick up. warm conditions with a high of 34 degrees. and that's an area that we're concerned about, because drought conditions are continuing, exceptional and extreme drought conditions over into california, and also back toward texas and oklahoma. so, it looks like the dry conditions, even though we're seeing some storms in the area, still not making much of a dent when it comes to the drought. now we have active weather also in japan, we have an extensive frontal system stretching from
china down into japan, and then another one as this rainy season begins. and this front bringing strong winds, 105 kilometers per hour, and also rain fall, 155 millimeters of rain during the past 24 hours for yamaguchi. it looks like the rain will continue as the system pushes toward the east, and notice how far down this stationary front extends. down into southern china, hong kong seeing a lot of rain and flash flooding and it looks like this will continue. we are in the rainy season as this system continues push towards the east. tokyo you're going to see some rain with a high of 26 on tuesday. shanghai at 25. taipei, more rain with a high of 31 degrees. let's wrap things up, look at europe. you see here an extensive frontal system for the eastern portions of the continent. that's bringing some heavy rain, and also some gusty conditions, and also another low that's bringing some strong weather over into the northern portions of the continent, and it looks
like plenty of rain to talk about, all across europe. everywhere from paris over into kiev, and so have the umbrellas with you. high of 15 in paris, high of 23 in kiev, madrid, you're the bright spot, sunny conditions, a high of 27 degrees. hope you have a good day wherever you are. here's a look at your extended forecast.
season, with trained birds doing a lot of the work. fishermen use cormorants to catch sweet fish. the practice dates back more than 1300 years. six fishermen in traditional attire went to work on torch-led boats. they used rope leashes to guide the birds. the climax claim as the evening drew to a close. fishermen light up the boats and drove the fish into shallow water. more than 1,000 people watched the spectacle. >> the fishing season will continue until the middle of october. as an official says, more than 100,000 people are expected to visit during that time. and that's all for this hour on "newsline." i'm shery ahn. thank you for watching.
us.hank you for joining these are the headlines for you this hour. pro-russian separatists in eastern ukraine claimed a landslide victory in sunday's vote for more autonomy. they deny any accusation of voter fraud in the referendum that kiev and the west call a legitimate. last day ofin the its massive six-week election. the opposition leader is seen to be the front router -- front runner for minister. results will not come out for friday. game one of th